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Mindset: Are you growth-minded or fixed?

Updated: Jan 20, 2019

You own your mindset, you are in full control of its influence on everything.  As we embark upon this series of posts focused on growth, it is apt that we concentrate first on ourselves as individuals.  And, ask ourselves, are growth and success interdependent?  Is improvement possible without effort?  Dr. Eve Grodnitzky, Ph.D., Author, ExecutiveEducator and Speaker on the power of mindset, sets-forth that “effort is the currency of improvement”.  

Since growth is generally perceived as positive, who would not want that association?  How do you know if you are growth-minded?  Can you be sure that you are seeking continuous improvement, or, are you simply distancing yourself from ‘fixed’?  Here are a couple of easy exercises to explore:


Inventory your ‘core programming’.  Grodnitzky define score programming as the ‘specific set of beliefs about your own and other’s skills and abilities that shape how you perceive, understand and react to…pretty much everything’.  First, create a list with columns comparing your beliefs, perceptions and their effects on how you react to others. Start by recording observations of yourself.  Then, add a column to include areas that you want to change.  Next, path constructive avenues to respond to them in the future. Finally, apply your fresh course whenever you encounter that trigger.


Take a self-assessment.  Most of us believe that we subscribe to ‘the world is my classroom’ mentality. However, there is actually a “Mindset Continuum” ₁.  The majority of us operate from the moderate side of the fixed spectrum.  Looking thru the continuum lens, how do you view yourself?  What situations trigger your fixed mindset?  Upon reflection, how do the optics improve when you apply a growth mindset?

Seek feedback. First, invest time to develop your mantra: “Thank you for your feedback.  Is there anything else?”  Then, approach friends, family and colleagues and ask for their objective feedback.  Next, ask them to select the above-descriptors that apply to you. Then, ask them to describe a recent example of when you demonstrated that mindset.  Finally, get to work on translating that feedback into positive action.

Now that you are working on continuous improvement as an individual, the next growth series post will focus on your professional development.

₁ Dweck, C. (2006).  Mindset: The New Psychology of Success. New York, USA:  Ballantine Books.

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